Saturday, May 22, 2010

A true human rights outrage

I can't believe, in this day and age, that two grown men could be given 14 years of hard labor simply for exploring their sexuality.
Steven Monjeza and Tiwonge Chimbalanga were given the harsh sentence for committing "unnatural acts."
Unnatural acts—like daring to find someone of the same sex attractive; for daring not to breed; for daring to be human.
If ever there was a human rights case worthy of the title, this is it. We're not talking about some scummy terrorist who entered Britain on a student visa and can't be sent back to Pakistan because, oh no, he'll be tortured or possibly killed there! Who the fuck cares? I certainly wouldn't lose any sleep.
This is different; this is the very case for which human rights is entirely applicable. Yet, Britain, one of Malawi's biggest donors, has not withdrawn aid, though it condemned the Malawian judge's decision. No Western country, as far as I'm aware, has withheld aid to protest the sentence. (I'm not much for giving aid to Africa anyway, since it never seems to help and therefore seems like a waste of resources. I'm content to leave it to charities to help out there.)
Now, I'm all for any culture deciding what to do with themselves. If a people want to be soulless sticks-in-the-mud by disapproving of homosexuality, that's their business. I'm no fan of gay militancy, which disregards any other way of life as valid or worthy of respect. It's one thing to discourage homosexuality as long as human rights are protected and no-one gets hurt. But a culture that despises gays and will lock them up in a tough prison where they may not live to see out those 14 years? That's an outrage.
Furthermore, this wasn't just one judge's decision. Most Malawians approve of the sentence. Some even shouted "you deserve death" at Monjeza and Chimbalanga.
Right now, I don't care how badly Malawi or any other homophobic African country needs our aid. They can struggle and starve until they get with the 21st century. Anti-gay fervor of this type is an outrage and the West should send a message that's every bit as strong as the sentence.


goddessdivine said...

I in no way condone homosexuality; but people should be able to do as they please (w/o harming anyone of course). Isn't it a crazy world we live in when people like this are horribly punished, yet terrorists are given every excuse in the book?

Nightdragon said...

I agree. It's insane.

They say in Malawi even serious criminals get bail. But not those two gay guys. Apparently, homosexuals are considered a greater threat to society there than vandals, muggers, rapists, etc. I guess the serious criminals get brownie points for being straight.